Lt. Colonel H.G. "Blondie" Hasler born in Dublin, Ireland and was commissioned in the Royal Marines in 1932. He was responsible for many of the concepts which led to the foundation of the Special Boat Services (SBS), a water-borne unit of the UK Special Forces. As leader of the "cockleshell heroes" he lead the legendary canoe raid in France during WWII. In 1960 he challenged Sir Francis Chichester to a single-handed Trans Atlantic race, which was the first race of its' kind. He invented the Perfecting the “Hasler Gear” for self steering yachts enabled the skipper to set a course fixed at an angle to the prevailing wind allowing the single-handed sailor to take care of other duties aboard the vessel. He also pioneered the use of a Chinese junk-rig which allowed all sail adjustments to be done from the safety of the boat's cabin.
1932 Commissioned in the Royal Marines
1942 Planned and led Operation Franklin as a leader of six, two-man folboat canoes for which he was subsequently awarded the Distinguished Service Order by the UK.
1960 Challenged Francis Chichester to a single-handed transatlantic race. Blondie raced Jester, a long-keeled 25' junk-rigged sloop. After 48 days he placed 2nd in the race that marked the first OSTAR. The OSTAR was established as a regular event held every four years.
Items in Collection of Museum of Yachting: correspondence with MoY, original photos, articles, original "Hasler Gear" - first self-steering wind vane gear of Hasler's invention, design and construction.